Just hours after I joked that The Bad Plus should change their name to The Bad Weather (the air was chilly and the sky dark during their soundcheck Saturday; the reverse of the last time they visited Ottawa, when it was so hot and humid that steam was rising from the grass) the clouds parted and gave way to a beautiful evening. A huge crowd gathered for TBP and Al DiMeola, and the memories of gray days and pelting rain vanished. Of the festivals I've attended around the world, few can offer a venue as compelling as Ottawa's Confederation Park on a clear night.
The sun is back today, Charles Lloyd's quartet is soundchecking, and the world seems pretty good right now.
Festivals are funny beasts; they really do take on a personality over the course of their run. Ottawa was a mix of great music and disappointing weather.
Of course, there was also plenty going on indoors, including some exceptional concerts like Trio M's show, which still has people buzzing. Some memorable jam sessions, too. Ethan Iverson and Reid Anderson joined drummer Nick Fraser for a strong mini-set last night, and some students got a thrill by performing with Iverson on drums.